Emily's Law has been reintroduced in the Minnesota House for the fifth year.
Emily's Law was first introduced in response to the death of Emily Johnson, a 2-year old who was murdered by her daycare provider's 13-year old son in an act that shook the Fergus Falls community.
The bill seeks to lower the age a juvenile could be charged as an adult for a violent offense from 14 to 13. The bill would also eliminate a court's ability to expunge a juvenile's criminal record if he or she is convicted of a violent offense.
It's time that the bill, introduced by Rep. Bud Nornes (R-Fergus Falls) and Rep. Torrey Westrom (R-Elbow Lake), be passed.
"Do you really think a 13-year-old doesn't know the difference between right and wrong?" Emily's mother, Lynn Johnson of Fergus Falls, asked lawmakers during 2008 testimony before a House committee.
It's a valid question.
A teenager should not be allowed to commit a heinous crime and be protected from the consequences for his or her actions because they are a juvenile. Teenagers also need to be held accountable for their actions just as adults are.
The bill's first committee reading is Thursday, Feb. 10, at 10:15 a.m.
We'll be sure to keep an eye on the progress of this issue that surely touches our community. -- Fergus Falls Daily Journal